We just spent 10 days in fabulously (cool) Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Lots of hiking, biking, pony rides, lazy afternoons, swimming and unplugging.

Ever tried to hike with a toddler? In and out of the hiking backpack. Jumping off of every rock. Half a mile takes sixty minutes to walk (or hop).

The great thing about taking a toddler on the trail is that everything is so exciting, fresh and new to them. But if you want to hike more than five hundred feet or if you want to move faster than a snails’ pace, you have to find a way to keep their attention.

Enter the I-Spy Walk. Just like the books, play a game of “what do you see” with your kiddo. Start by modeling the behavior for your child: “I spy a blue sky.” And then ask your child what he or she sees: “What do you see?” You’d be amazed how it keeps their attention. Point out animals, colors, textures, smells — make it a whole sensory experience.

Just be ready for a series of “I spy a red car” statements from your little one next time you walk down your neighborhood block, too.

If a trip to Teton National Park isn’t in your summer plans, here are some local trails and state parks where you can get your hike on:

Northern Central Railroad (NCR) Trail
Cromwell Valley Park
Oregon Ridge Nature Center Trails
Gwynns Falls Trail
Gunpowder Falls State Park
Patapsco Valley State Park
Cunningham Falls State Park

What’s your favorite local “get out in nature” spot?